Six hundred and sixty-one couples married en masse at a Valentine’s Day ceremony in México state on Monday.
The service in Nezahualcóyotl, 20 kilometers east of the center of Mexico City, revived an annual tradition made redundant by the COVID-19 pandemic. However, among the wedding dresses, rings and flowers, the newlyweds-in-waiting still had to wear face masks and use antibacterial gel.
The event was still relatively small: the maximum number of couples in other years was 1,200, while in 2021 a virtual service was held online.
The couples were married at no charge and professional makeup was provided by local beauty schools. The municipal government also raffled gifts and trips among the newlyweds.
Jonhatan García finally tied the knot with his partner of 10 years, with whom he has a child. He said the timing was right: “We would have liked to get married before, but it [the pandemic] was worse then,” he said.
José Luis Ibarra married María Edith Peña after the couple met in a shopping mall two years ago. “Really happy. Really proud to have a partner like her and hopefully it will be for life,” he said.
“We already treated each other like a couple. There was always good chemistry, good communication and above all, a lot of love,” Edith said.
Meanwhile, Dolores Bojórquez married a professional wrestler called Flama Roja (Red Flame), the newspaper Infobae reported. She said the public service had enabled them to say their vows. “We wouldn’t have been able to marry due to the economy … we took advantage of these weddings,” she said.
Bojórquez added she was grateful to have the opportunity to marry, despite the pandemic. “We wouldn’t have ever expected to marry in face masks but we have to be thankful that we are here and that we could marry,” she said.
However, the mood in Mexico was less festive than normal. Only 17% of people planned to celebrate Valentine’s Day and 57.5% were set on staying home, according to a survey by the insurance website HelloSafe México. The survey of 985 Mexicans was compiled from January 21-February 1.
With reports from Infobae